scuzzy

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

1960s, US, colloquial, expressive coinage, with influence from scum, fuzzy, lousy, sleazy. First attested use is in reference to Ratso Rizzo in the film Midnight Cowboy (1969).

Adjective[edit]

scuzzy (comparative scuzzier, superlative scuzziest) (colloquial)

  1. Dirty or grimy.
    a scuzzy toilet
    • 2012, Simon Reynolds, Energy Flash: A Journey Through Rave Music and Dance Culture, Soft Skull Press (→ISBN), page 281
      Outside the gay discotheques, there was also a yuppy scene of 'XTC parties' that precociously featured one of the defining aspects of rave – the eschewing of alcohol in favour of juice and mineral water. For these respectable professionals, Ecstasy didn't seem like a drug; it was cheap, there was no scuzzy paraphernalia like syringes or bongs, it wasn't []
  2. Disreputable; sleazy.
    • 2015, Eva Dolan, Tell No Tales, Random House (→ISBN), page 167
      They were easy to shrug off as harmless cranks, only interested in getting together in scuzzy pubs to talk about a revolution they would never manage to provoke, more likely to fight among themselves than raise a concerted attack on the minorities they were so opposed to.
    • 2016 March 21, Allison P. Davies, “What I Learned Tindering My Way Across Europe”, in Travel + Leisure[1], archived from the original on 2018-01-06:
      I’d been counting on Paul, a scuzzy-but-still-sexy manager of a music club in Shoreditch, to meet up with me on my first night in London.

Related terms[edit]